Marriage to a U.S. citizen is often seen as a straightforward route to obtaining permanent residency, but it’s crucial to understand that certain circumstances can lead to the denial of a green card application. This article aims to shed light on some common reasons why individuals married to U.S. citizens may face green card denials.

Obtaining a green card isn’t guaranteed for everyone. Ineligibility factors can include prior criminal convictions, security concerns, or violations of immigration laws. These factors can result in the denial of the green card application.

Marriage Fraud:
U.S. immigration authorities are vigilant when it comes to identifying marriage fraud. This occurs when a marriage is entered into solely for immigration benefits without a genuine intent to build a life together. Suspected fraud may trigger requests for additional evidence, interviews, or even removal proceedings.

Inadequate Documentation:
Proper documentation is key to demonstrating a bona fide marriage. Couples must provide evidence such as joint financial records, photographs, and affidavits from friends and family. Failure to do so may lead USCIS to question the legitimacy of the marriage and deny the green card application.

Failure to Attend Interviews:
USCIS generally requires both spouses to attend interviews during the green card application process. Failing to attend these interviews or provide valid reasons for missing them can result in denial.

Affidavit of Support Issues:
The U.S. citizen spouse must submit an Affidavit of Support (Form I-864) to prove their ability to financially support the immigrant spouse. Failure to meet income requirements or submit necessary documentation can lead to a denied green card application.

Criminal History:
Certain criminal convictions can render applicants ineligible for a green card. USCIS considers the nature and severity of the offense when assessing eligibility.

Health-Related Inadmissibility:
Certain health conditions can make applicants inadmissible to the United States. USCIS may deny the green card application if a medical examination reveals a condition posing public health risks or requiring excessive public assistance.

Failure to Maintain Status:
If the applicant was in the U.S. on a different visa status (e.g., a student visa) and failed to maintain that status, they may be ineligible for an adjustment of status to a green card.

Failure to Depart After Visa Overstay:
Individuals who overstayed their visa for an extended period before marrying a U.S. citizen may undergo closer scrutiny by USCIS during the application process.

It’s essential to recognize that the green card application process can be intricate, with unique circumstances in each case. If you plan to apply for a green card through marriage to a U.S. citizen, seeking guidance from an experienced immigration attorney is advisable. An attorney can help you navigate the requirements, address any potential issues, and prepare a robust application, ensuring the best chance of success with USCIS.